National Healthcare Decisions Day

Every year on April 16th, UF Health Shands Hospital hosts an event for National Healthcare Decisions Day (NHDD), which aims to encourage filling out an advance directive.


NHDD is an event for people to have their questions answered on healthcare decisions and gather resources to prepare for their end of life care.


Preparing for the end-of-life is not just for the elderly, as anyone 18 or older can fill out an advance directive. Find the proper advance directives for your state here.


Christina Coffield, a former nurse, now VITAS Health Representative explained:


“An advance directive is an opportunity for you to vocalize and have a voice ahead of time for the moment that comes that you may not have a voice.”  

As a part of NHDD, UF Health Shands Hospital hosts a "Before I Die Wall." As the name suggests, these walls are places where people can share life goals with others. These murals originated in New Orleans, LA, and are the creation of Candy Chang. Chang found inspiration for her creation after losing a loved one. The first wall materialized on the side of an abandoned home; they are now put up across the world. The walls make an appearance in Gainesville, FL throughout the month of April.

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"Before I Die Wall" at UF Health Shands Hospital

Each wall allows people to fill in a blank stating what they would like to do before they pass, a shared bucket list that encourages proactive thinking about one's mortality, much like an advance directive.